It is time to overcome the writer’s block that summer vacations cause. Hasn’t it happened to you that, after several weeks without working on a specific text, it costs you horrors to start again? Long vacations like summer bring me headlong for a few days. Days that I need to resume the rhythm with all my stories (who tell stories tell courses, blog, mailing list). Although you can get professional help from an editing and proofreading service but this guide can also help you with the process.
I am not talking about a writer’s block to use (work, work, work and I get stuck) but of a distance block. Something that happens when we neglect a story for the benefit of completing other different tasks. Tasks that are normally much less pleasant than writing.
Today I am going to tell you the ‘6 ways’ that I follow to overcome this happy writer’s block.
Writer’s block by distancing
In this blog, we have already discussed about writer’s block. However, this blocking by distance is not the same as getting stuck with a story due to lack of planning, lack of development, lack of depth in the characters, of the story. It is a habitual creative block when facing a major project or starting that project from scratch.
This type of writer’s block is usually resolved by spending a little time, approaching it from another point of view, or designing a more or less detailed action plan.
In any case, this is not the block that we want to refer to here, but rather a block that occurs when you fail to immerse yourself in your story with the same intensity that you did before the great break. Once done with this section you can always turn to a professional editing and proofreading service for the final product.
Writing is a very personal thing, but what is undeniable is that, when you start a story, you should write as often as possible. Stephen King says in his book “As I Write” “in writing a book, does not stop writing a single day until the first draft is finished. At first, I thought it was crazy but … there is nothing better than doing it this way so as not to lose the thread or the feeling we have with our characters and their stories. Because when we distance ourselves from history, we find it hard to empathize with them and remember how they felt in the situation in which we left them”.
But the worst thing about this blockage by distancing is that we have lost the perspective of where they come from and where they are going.
6 Methods To Overcome Writer’s Block
As in any block, there are several things you can do to deal with it and overcome it. For this specific writer’s block, we propose these 6 methods that I use (and I’m using right now) to restart and put the machines at 100% of your usual productivity.
1. Editing and proofreading
It is the first thing we should do. Editing and proofreading every word, we already have about our history.
Do it without the critical eye of our editor self? That annoying me that will force us to stop us coma after coma, name after name and expression after expression to analyze it, criticize it, and cry out to us to modify it.
Our goal is to try to read our text as if we were an external reader. For that, you can send a PDF to your eBook, mobile, or tablet so you don’t have the temptation to correct while reading.
Doing so will not help us to have the feelings of our history back to the surface, but it is a better approach than any other to start with that unblocking of the writer.
2. Correct the last chapter
If you remember your story perfectly (which is quite likely) and what you want is to get your hands on the mass of your writing process, it is best to do the opposite of what I just told you: let yourself out the editor. He will be in charge of reviewing even the most intimate details of the text, the relationships between characters, the names, your objectives for the story, etc. to add notes and possible modifications to that text. In this way, you will force yourself to enter your story by force. However, perhaps these two methods are too uncreative to remove that writer’s block by distancing. Editing and proofreading should be an essential part as it also helps you find more mistakes.
3. Develop the background of your protagonist
It is possible that you already have a text that introduces your protagonist. Maybe you even have more than one. But writing about him and living his life through your own words are the best way to get inside his skin. You might come across some of the other good thoughts while editing and proofreading.
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Think of some detail of your protagonist that you have not yet told or that you have not delved into. Imagine a situation before your story and that has him (or her) as the protagonist and write a short story that tells your actions. How she grew up, how she came to be in those situations, why she did it. So you can jump over the writer’s block and get back in full connection with your story.
4. Write a possible continuation or prequel
You already know how your story will end and you also know how and why it started. What better way to re-analyze the ins and outs of it than by writing a prequel or a continuation? Editing and proofreading can always be done at the end so don’t worry about it.
Nor does it need to be another masterpiece of thousands of pages. Writing a few of them and talking about the consequences that this story will have (or have generated) will suffice. Where will each of the characters end? Where did they come from? What consequences will everything they are doing have for the world? Why did they reach a crisis point like that? Anything that forces you to unravel each of the threads that give life to your world.
5. Develop a side story
Here I usually do two different things. On the one hand, sometimes, I develop a spin-off in the style of the current series. I pick up a character I like and tell an alternate story (parallel to the one I’m telling or not) that tells his adventures and their implications in the general story (or due to it).
On the other hand, I also make an effort to imagine what would have happened if… so I change some basic elements of the plot and see what happens. What if the bad guy wasn’t so bad? What if the protagonist had a dark side? Do we change the ending? What if…? A small creative exercise of leading to the absurd decisions you have already made. Just do it and if it doesn’t make sense while editing and proofreading just swipe it out.
6. Think about how to add a new subframe
How can you force yourself to analyze all the plots, characters, and threads you have already designed? The best way is to see yourself in the obligation of having to add a new character, develop one of the ones you already have in greater depth, or create an alternative sub-story that happens at the same time as yours. You don’t even need to write anything – just force yourself to do that mental exercise of adding something new to the whole story. In this way, you will have to, yes or yes, enter fully into your story. Only editing and proofreading can help you perfect this habit and you just need to keep on doing it again and again.
Pros: You will go back to review the ins and outs of your story 100%.
Cons: Most likely, you will end up including this new modification within your story, forcing you to rewrite what you already have and add complexity to everything. And, in the end, you will have turned your writer’s block into an overworked block.
Re-joining a story already started is not an immediate process. The longer the time you stop writing about something, the more it will cost you to get 100% involved in that story again. You can use any of these 6 methods (or all of them) to re-engage in your story but … I think the best way to avoid seeing yourself in this situation is not to stop writing about your story until you finish it. In this way, you will never suffer this writer’s block due to distancing. Of course, you will also have to forget to rest from your history and your characters.